You know, in the 80s, Jonathan Demme could do no wrong. Here's a guy who started off the decade directing one of the most original, classic films ever made (Melvin and Howard), then later in the decade proceeded to put out what is essentially the greatest concert film ever made (Stop Making Sense) and one of the 80s' most well-received comedies (Married To The Mob). In between, he still found time to direct music videos for classic New Wave bands like Suburban Lawns and New Order. Even with all of that, the guy was just gearing up for the next decade, with his first film of the 90s, The Silence Of The Lambs, nailing down practically every Oscar award available, including one for him for Best Director. The guy was and is a master (not so much in recent years, but hope springs eternal . . . ).
Something Wild was done during his 80s period, released in 1986, right after Stop Making Sense. It's odd, but in the present day it's not really as heralded, or even remembered, as much as the other movies Demme did back then. Which is too bad. Something Wild is a superb movie. I've never been a big fan of Melanie Griffith, but in this movie she's great as Lulu/Audrey, the "wild thing" who breaks Jeff Daniels out of his straightlaced life. The movie starts off lighthearted and funny, but near the end takes a very dark turn as Ray Liotta's character is introduced. I'm trying not to give away any spoilers for this film - if you've never seen this, go out, find a copy and watch it. You'll be very entertained and pleasantly surprised.
I saw this movie in Maryland when it came out, and as much as I liked the film, I was more intrigued by the eclectic soundtrack, which featured several of my favorite artists from that time - David Byrne, Fine Young Cannibals, UB40, New Order - along with a generous helping of reggae/Caribbean music from artists like Jimmy Cliff and Sonny Okussun. As varying as the music is, it all fits together and it all fits the film, which is what a good soundtrack is supposed to do.
I don't know why this soundtrack is so hard to find - it took me a long time to find a CD version to replace the cassette copy I've had for so long. Anyway, enjoy, and let me know what you think - comments (well, at this point, ANY comments) will be appreciated.
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